Minutes of Parish Council Meeting held on 18th November 2020
Sidlesham Parish Council
Minutes of Parish Council Meeting on 18th November 2020, held electronically,
Members of the council and the public were informed that the evening’s meeting would be recorded.
Present: Mr M Mellodey (Chairman), Mrs C Hall, Mrs P Tull, Mr C Field, Mr A Harland, Mr L Ramm, Mrs M Monnington, Mr R Ryder, Cllr P Montyn (WSCC), Cllr C Purnell (CDC) and the Clerks, Mrs T MacIntyre and Mrs C MacKenzie.
Mr Mellodey welcomed Caroline MacKenzie, the Parish Council’s new Clerk, and introduced her to members of the PC.
1. Questions from the public present at the meeting on subjects other than those on the agenda. None
2. Apologies for Absence: Mrs L Gibson-House and Cllr D Johnson
3. Declarations by councillors of personal interests in items on this agenda. None.
4. Minutes of the Parish Council Meeting held on 21st October 2020 to be signed as a correct record. Mr Field proposed and Mrs Tull seconded that the Minutes be signed. All agreed.
5. Minutes of Planning Committee Meeting held on 21st October 2020 to be signed as a correct record. Mr Harland proposed and Mrs Hall seconded that the Minutes be signed. All agreed.
6. Matters arising from the above minutes not dealt with in separate items below.
7. WSCC Councillor
Cllr Montyn reported on the significant budget gap in this and the next financial years. This has been exacerbated by pressure from funding for Adult Social Care and Children’s Care. The gap currently stands at £23m out of a budget of £650m.
The Community Hub is working well helping those with problems caused by the pandemic. The programme is run jointly by WSCC and other local authorities.
Free School meals are to be reinstated during the Christmas holidays. Cllr Montyn stated that the families of those children who qualify for free school meals often need more general help and WSCC is doing all it can to support them. Mrs Tull asked whether the free school meals would be delivered through vouchers and Cllr Montyn confirmed that they would.
Cllr Montyn has kept in contact with the head teachers of the 4 schools in his Division. In this way, he can have an understanding of particular problems with which the County Council could help.
He informed the PC that there is some encouragement with regard to the Planning White Paper. The housing numbers will not change but the algorithm may be adjusted.
It is anticipated that ash die-back will affect almost 20% of trees on County land. There will be a new budget item to handle the problem.
Mrs Tull asked that the pop-up cycle lanes should no longer be supported. The survey had given a strong popular vote to have them removed. Cllr Montyn replied that WSCC’s call-in vote did not support the cycle lanes and they will be removed.
8. CDC Councillor
Cllr Purnell reported that all local councils have suffered from loss of income as a result of the pandemic and this will adversely affect the budget.
CDC has not heard anything official on the Planning White Paper algorithm but it is hoped it will take into account the special circumstances in this part of the country.
Mr Harland asked if Cllr Purnell could follow up on an outstanding planning application which has yet to be determined. He was concerned that time on the application will expire and the application will go directly to the Inspectorate for a decision. The Clerk was asked to email the details to Cllr Purnell. Mr Mellodey had pointed out the difficult access to the property during a site meeting with the Manager of Highways and he had agreed that visibility would be very limited.
9. Neighbourhood Plan
Mr Ryder reported that the PC had agreed to review each of the 4 sections of the Neighbourhood Plan separately. The section on planning, infrastructure and highways had been circulated. Mr Ryder hoped that Councillors felt it was heading in the right direction and asked that they send him their comments; a further draft will be circulated before the PC meets to discuss the section. Mrs Monnington was concerned that farm vehicles had been singled out for causing pollution, adversely affecting air quality and noise. Mr Ryder felt it referred to all large vehicles on the B2145. Mr Ryder suggested the PC hold a meeting in the new year when all have read and commented on the document. Mrs Tull felt the NP should not be hurried but Mr Bedford had spoken to Mr Frost, Head of Planning at CDC, and his advice had been to continue work on the NP.
Mrs Hall suggested that the volunteers be kept informed of progress.
10. Memorial Playing Field
10.1 Fire and Electrical testing of the pavilion has been carried out to ensure that the building is made safe. Mr Ryder had circulated a spreadsheet of costs. He requested approval for funds to repair the floodlight shed (£354) and carry out electrical work as recommended in the report (up to £1,000). Mr Ryder reported that at the October meeting, he had presented the PC with a budget for approval and reported that costs so far are within that budget. All agreed that electrical and safety actions must be carried out and the PC should spend the minimum necessary to make it useable in the short term. Mrs Tull suggested the PC hold a closed meeting of councillors to discuss the future of the building.
Mr Mellodey has arranged a meeting with architect to ascertain some idea of the cost of a new building.
10.2 A Fire Risk Assessment had been carried out. The PC agreed to fund actions listed in the report. All agreed.
10.3 Bin for Clubhouse
A bin is not necessary at the present time.
10.4 Mr Mellodey has written an update on the MPF project for the Sidlesham Parishioner and Spread. This will be circulated.
11. Highways, footpaths and cycleways.
11.1 SID for Paddock Straight
The post has been installed. The SID has been ordered and is expected to be delivered within the next two weeks.
11.2 Greenway Selsey/Chichester Cycle Route.
Mr Mellodey attended a Zoom meeting on 17th November. The Golf Links Lane footpath is being upgraded to a bridleway. All bridleways of the Greenway Route will be covered in a cinder dressing similar to that on the Medmerry Route (not tarmac). It is hoped it will be completed by spring 2021. The Hunston section is going well. A route through Sidlesham remains difficult and there will be a meeting at the MPF to try to find a solution.
12. Assets & Amenities Workgroup.
12. Playground Maintenance
Mrs Hall asked the Clerk to try to ensure that the rebuilding of the small mound is complete before the annual external inspection in January 2021. Mr Mellodey is investigating alternative materials to wood or concrete for the mound supports.
13. Clayton Memorial Plaque
Mr Field had spoken to the owners of 1 Clayton Cantle who advised that they had had the plaque resurfaced 15 years ago. Those who did the work have now retired but they will contact them to seek a recommendation for someone who could carry out the work. The residents of Clayton Cantle said that many walkers stopped to view the plaque and it was viewed as a feature of the neighbourhood.
14. Ferry Farm Grant
14.1 Ferry Farm December Grant Application
The grant application process has been extended by one month and applications should be submitted by end of January. Articles have been submitted to the Parishioner and Spread inviting applications. The PC should decide in January what it might apply for.
15. Room for a Tree Project
The project involved a lot of work by Mrs Gibson-House and has been a great success. All trees have been claimed.
16.1.1 CDC (New Homes Bonus grant for mower) £3,107.07
16.1.2 HMRC (VAT return 6th April 2020) £1187.76
16.2.1 Mr H Platt (refund expenses on mower security) £164.92
16.2.2 Manhood Wildlife & Heritage Group (contribution to interpretation boards) £1,500
16.2.3 Sidlesham PCC (contribution to churchyard mowing and tree work) £750.00
16.2.4 T Macintyre (October salary) £552.08
16.2.5 Mr H Platt (refund cost of fuel for mower and strimmer) £130.34
16.2.6 Scanstation (annual fee for hosting online mailbox) £43.20
16.2.7 Unity Trust Bank (quarterly service fee) £18.00
16.2.8 M Mellodey (refund cost of printing) £8.64
16.2.9 M H Kennedy (mow Paddock Straight) £136.20
16.3.10 Wilbar Associates (install flexible hinge and post for SID) £1050.00
Mr Harland proposed and Mrs Tull seconded that items 16.1.1 to 16.2.10 be approved en bloc. All agreed.
16.3 Approve Precept for 2021/2022
The Clerk had circulated a draft Precept. Mrs Tull did not believe the PC could justify an increase of 23% in the present financial climate. Mr Ryder felt that sums were very small and would not add significantly to parishioners’ council tax.
The increase in the playground budget is due to the major work required to ensure the safety of the big mounds. Less expensive ways in which this could be achieved are being investigated.
A budget of £4,500 had been allocated to work on the clubhouse development and Mrs Tull felt that this should be funded out of savings. Mr Mellodey stated that this is an exceptional year when expensive measures are required to make the clubhouse fit for use. The budget is a worst case scenario and all of the £4,500 may not prove necessary. The increase, without £4,500 for Clubhouse Development, would be 10.8%. Mrs Tull proposed that the £4,500 for Clubhouse Development be removed from the Precept. Mr Field seconded her proposal. 4 Councillors agree to the proposal, 3 voted against and 1 abstained. The proposal was carried.
Mrs Monnington proposed and Mr Ryder seconded that the PC approve a Precept of £40,415 for 2021/2022. All agreed.
16.3 Approve donation to Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal (£15 for wreath + donation).
It was agreed that the PC donate £45 to the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal in addition to the £15 cost of the wreath, making a total of £60. All agreed.
16.5 Confirm approval of cost of electrical check on Clubhouse (£250 per day). Agreed unanimously.
16. Reports. None
17. Correspondence. None.
18. Matters of urgent public importance. None
19. Matters of Information. None
Meeting closed at 8.30 pm